pedestrians crossing

Safety Tips For Pedestrians in Georgia & Tennessee

We recently discussed the many hazards and consequences associated with distracted driving in North Georgia and Tennessee. The driver is not the only person at risk of injury – pedestrians are frequently victims of distracted driving accidents.

Everyone in Georgia and Tennessee should know the high-risk areas for pedestrian accidents, whether you are on foot or behind the wheel. Let’s discuss tips to improve pedestrian safety and how to file a personal injury claim if injured.

Recent Pedestrian Tragedies On I-75 in North Georgia

As previously discussed, Georgia is unfortunately one of the most dangerous states for people on foot, with 342 pedestrian deaths in 2022. This is one of the highest rates in the country, and it has been on the rise, with the Governors Highway Safety Association noting Georgia's pedestrian fatalities increased by 57.8% from January-June 2019 to January-June 2022.

According to the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), 84% of pedestrian deaths happen overnight, especially due to limited visibility. Recent tragedies support this data.

For example, after midnight on Feb. 20, a Georgia State Patrol trooper was struck and killed by a vehicle on I-75 in Clayton County. The trooper, First Class Chase Redner of GSP’s Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team was conducting the death investigation of a construction worker (which occurred about five hours earlier) when he was hit outside his cruiser near a deep curve on the interstate.

Clayton County is notorious for road risks, as the NHTSA recently listed it as the 17th most dangerous county in the U.S. for pedestrians. The data for Clayton County noted that 243 people were killed in crashes from 2017 to 2021. Ninety-two of the victims — or 37.86% – were pedestrians.

Only a week after Trooper Redner’s passing, a pedestrian was killed on I-75 in Cobb County. Marietta police said the 58-year-old man was hit by a tractor-trailer and a sedan in the interstate’s southbound lanes and pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation has been underway as to why the man was in the lane in the early morning of Feb. 28.

Tennesseans Fight For Improved Pedestrian Safety

Senseless and preventable pedestrian accidents had residents of Chattanooga, Tennessee take to their City Council meeting in late March. Following deadly collisions at Frazier Avenue intersections, one of which claimed the lives of a woman and her 22-month-old son who were visiting the area, Tennesseans made their voices heard. They called for safer pedestrian access, even at pedestrian bridges, and stronger street designs. Hopefully, the City Council will act on the demands of their constituents.

Pritchard Injury Firm can attest to the need for these improvements, as our Chattanooga office is located near the scenes of these tragedies. While we enjoy the charming cafes and shops near Frazier Avenue, we exercise extreme caution when navigating the streets.

Tips For Navigating Crosswalks in GA and TN

Pedestrians have the right-of-way at all intersections and driveways regardless of a marked crosswalk. But even pedestrians might not be well-informed. Some tips for navigating a crosswalk include:

● Look left, right, and left again before crossing the street, making eye contact with drivers of oncoming vehicles to make sure they see you.

● If no crosswalk is available and your view is blocked, move to a place where you can see oncoming traffic.

● Be predictable. Whenever possible, walk on the sidewalk; if no sidewalk is available, walk facing traffic.

The GDOT also noted that 95% of pedestrian deaths happen outside a crosswalk. Wittingly or unwittingly, pedestrians often put themselves at risk when they walk outside the lines.

More Tips For Pedestrians in GA and TN

Studies indicate that 9-out-of-10 pedestrians struck by a vehicle at 40 miles per hour will die. These NHTSA recommended preventative measures will protect you and those nearby:

● Always seek well-lit areas.

● Avoid alcohol and drug impairment when walking.

● Wear bright and/or reflective clothing, and use a flashlight at night.

● Watch for cars entering or exiting driveways or backing up in parking lots.

● Children younger than 10 should cross the street with an adult.

Even if the DOTs of Georgia and Tennessee make efforts to improve visibility on the roads, everyone must be more aware of pedestrians. Pritchard Injury Firm will continue to cover pedestrian accident trends through the year and in October during National Pedestrian Safety Month.

Your GA/TN Personal Injury Lawyer

Filing a claim quickly after a pedestrian accident and consulting with a personal injury lawyer in North Georgia or Tennessee will help maximize the value for your physical, mental and property damages.

Pritchard Injury Firm is here to provide the compassionate legal and emotional support you deserve. Contact Pritchard Injury Firm for a free consultation.

[MOU1]Link to the Distracted Driving article.


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